The management of Accident and Emergency Departments is a major challenge for hospitals due to the unpredictability of the demand and the limited availability of resources to meet that demand. The increased budgetary pressure on the NHS and lack of investment in general practices has meant that increasingly, A&E departments are expected to cope with a large volume of patients that could not be seen elsewhere. A report from the National Audit Office in the UK (National Audit Office, 2013) suggests that over 63% of trusts with major A&E departments failed to meet the target 4 hour patient turn-around target time set by government between January and March 2013. This figure provides clear evidence of the pressure being suffered by A&E hospital departments across the country.
63% of trusts with major A&E departments failed to meet the target 4 hour patient turn-around target
Working with CMFT Manchester we are building a detailed simulation model of their Accident and Emergency service department. Our model is being developed to support Decision Support within the department to provide predictive solution to resource issues. This will respond in real-time to any sudden changes in demand and will allow hospital managers and medical teams to identify ahead of time what extra resources might be needed or where they should concentrate on releasing assets that will soon be needed.